By Anne Cetas

I commend to you Phoebe, . . . for indeed she has been a helper of many and of myself also. —Romans 16:1-2

Counting your blessings promotes good physical health, according to a study by some US doctors. Volunteers who kept weekly gratitude journals reported fewer aches and pains than those who recorded daily hassles or neutral events.

A “gratitude visit” was developed by Dr. Martin E. P. Seligman to promote strong emotional health. He tells people to think of someone who has made an important difference in their lives. He asks them to write the story of how that person has helped them, and then to visit that person and read the story aloud. Tests show that a year later the people who had done so were happier and reported fewer episodes of depression. Even more important, think of what it must have done for those who were thanked!

The apostle Paul had a long list of people who had helped him and for whom he was grateful (Rom. 16:1-16). He wrote that Phoebe had “been a helper,” Priscilla and Aquila had “risked their own necks” for his life, and Mary had “labored much” for him. And he took time to write his thanks in a letter to the church at Rome.

Who has helped to shape your life? Could you make a gratitude visit—for their sake, and for yours?

Consider what the Lord has done
Through those who’ve shown you love;
Then thank them for their faithful deeds,
For blessings from above.  —Sper

Gratitude should not be an occasional incident but a continuous attitude.

Devotional forwarded to you by:


NCCP Ecumenical Ministry – Church of the Risen Lord

University of the Philippines, Diliman Campus, QC


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